Can the president withdraw someone's security clearance?


Berlin - With a panel discussion in cooperation with the Konrad-Adenauer-Stiftung, the reservists' association started the campaign "Reserve and Democracy - We Against Extremism" in Berlin.

The former President of the Bundestag and chairman of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation Prof. Dr. Norbert Lammert welcomed around 50 guests in the hall and the around 1,400 viewers in the Internet stream, who hosted the discussion by the Armed Forces Commissioner Dr. Eva Högl, the President of the Reservist Association Prof. Dr. Patrick Sensburg, the Commander's Deputy and Deputy Inspector of the Army Lieutenant General Johann Langenegger and the Saarland Interior Secretary Christian Seel persecuted.

"Just like the active soldiers, we reservists stand for our country and thus for democracy," said Sensburg in his opening statement. “So we have to keep discussing why we are serving and making our values ​​clear. This can already help to ensure that comrades do not drift into extreme ideas, ”the President continued.

Defense Commissioner Högl repeated her demand for a security check for all those who serve in the armed forces, including reservists. "If such a responsible service is provided, we must be able to be sure that the people have both feet on the ground of the free democratic basic order." However, there must be clear criteria and not a culture of defamation. "It is important to me that it does not stay in a gray area." The first step, however, is the sensitivity among comrades - what works and what is a border crossing. That has to be strengthened. "In this way we also strengthen those who are strong against extremism."

An essential point in the work against extremism is also the cooperation of the authorities, appealed State Secretary Seel and President Sensburg unanimously. To do this, it must be prevented that breaks arise between the services. “I think it works really well little by little,” said Sensburg. For example, it could be avoided that the Bundeswehr withdraws someone's permission to wear a uniform, but that this person continues to represent the armed forces at association events. Sensburg also spoke out in favor of strengthening the Military Counterintelligence Service (MAD).

Protecting the free democratic basic order and standing up for it is the essence of the Bundeswehr parliamentary army and thus also of the reserve. Despite the oath of service on the Basic Law, there are cases of active soldiers and reservists who have internalized extremist ideas and sometimes also violate the Basic Law. Such developments and cases run the risk of undermining the trust that the Bundeswehr enjoys in our society - they are unacceptable for a democratic army. The reservists' association consistently positions itself against extremist tendencies. The kick-off event in Berlin is to be followed by other events on the topic throughout Germany in the near future. "The discussion that we are initiating here now has to be carried into the 16 regional groups and the subordinate regional and district groups," said Sensburg.